Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, DIADUMINIUS, by PIERRE BENOIT



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DIADUMINIUS, by            
First Line: The mournful majesty of human greatness
Last Line: In the old house to which one will return.
Subject(s): Caesar, Julius (100-44 B.c.); Monuments


The mournful majesty of human greatness,
Monument of desires, kisses, tears,
What name better than yours, Diaduminius,
Gathers its pride into a symbol for the years?

For you were the strange and silent Cæsar
Who leaned at night upon the terraces of flame
When the swift storm over the urns' black waters
With blue metallic lightnings came.

And who that has known your story now can say:
"Live, thrust skyward still more proud and bold—
Happiness is with the women of one's desire,
In a marble palace, beside a sceptre of gold"?

It lies, O Cæsar, near an old bell-tower,
With sapphires strewn in a rippling burn,
In an old garden flowered with young roses,
In the old house to which one will return.





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